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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10204/3794

Title: How no-man’s-land is now everyone’s problem: the renowned Cape flora is everywhere in retreat as runaway pine invasions transform the Outeniqua and Tsitsikamma mountains
Authors: Cowling, R
Van Wilgen, BW
Kraaij, T
Britton, J
Keywords: Cape Floral Region
Cape flora
Pine invasion
Fynbos
Outeniqua mountains
Tsitsikamma mountains
Issue Date: Sep-2009
Publisher: Botanical Society of South Africa
Citation: Cowling, R, Van Wilgen, BW, Kraaij, T and Britton, J. 2009. How no-man’s-land is now everyone’s problem: the renowned Cape flora is everywhere in retreat as runaway pine invasions transform the Outeniqua and Tsitsikamma mountains. Veld & Flora, Vol.95(3), pp 147-149
Abstract: Successful land management depends in part on good planning. Planners often use brief descriptions of possible futures (termed scenarios) to help people to visualize the longer-term consequences of the actions they take (or fail to take) today. Our tale is of a rather sobering scenario that we feel should be urgently and seriously considered by those planning for the Garden Route’s future. It envisages a future in which residents and tourists alike are subject to severe and chronic water rationing as a result of a failure of mountain catchments to deliver ample, clean water as they do today. In this possible future, fires would rage with abnormal intensity, seriously threatening homes, crops, plantations and people. The high-intensity fires would damage the soil, resulting in erosion and silting up of dams, further exacerbating water problems. Tourist numbers would dwindle, both because of the dire water situation and because the unique and attractive fynbos that characterizes the region’s many hiking trails would have largely disappeared under invasive alien pines. Economic activity would flounder and poverty would increase. Such a scenario now seems a strong possibility rather than an unlikely and distant outcome, simply because society has failed to plan for, and to deal with, the threat of invasive alien plants. How could such a situation have arisen? Let us explain.
Description: Copyright: 2009 Botanical Society of South Africa
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10204/3794
ISSN: 0042-3203
Appears in Collections:Environmental management
Forestry and wood science
Ecosystems processes & dynamics
General science, engineering & technology

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